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I am in the process of remodeling a house where I intend to spend the rest of my life. I am giving serious thought to turning a closet into a gun safe or building one inside a larger closet. It would need to hold about 20 long guns plus hand guns. The actual fabrication is not a problem, between me and my carpenter we have the skills to build about anything. I was hoping someone here had done something like this before and could give some ideas. I am currently leaning towards lining a small closet with metal and some kind of reinforced door that will appear to be a standard wood door from the outside.

Any ideas or photos would be appreciated.
Thanks, pig
 

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I haven't done it yet, but I've always had basements (you'll never go back once you've had one). My next house will be the last, and I'll surround the safe room with rebar-reinforced concrete that is built around the safe's door frame. Also by having it concrete-encased in the basement, I'm hoping to fire-proof it. I'm envisioning a bit of a man-cave where I'll have room to mount my favorites on the walls.

This should be a fun project for you. I know that I'm looking forward to it!
 

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I just remodeled a room in my house. I built a big closet around my 60 gun safe. I installed heavy doors on the front with an electronic dead bolt. Even if they gain access to the closet they then have to try and breach the safe.
 

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Welcome! I'd say, don't forget to fireproof it. One of the big advantages of a "standard" safe is a good fire rating (45 minutes at 1200 degrees, etc). I imagine layering furnace brick between two layers of heavy steel would probably do the trick.
 
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My cousin and her husband incorporated a " SAFE ROOM " into their new house in Texas. Concrete/steel locked into the foundation. Guns, jewelry and storm protection.
 

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The actual fabrication is not a problem, between me and my carpenter we have the skills to build about anything. I was hoping someone here had done something like this before and could give some ideas. I am currently leaning towards lining a small closet with metal and some kind of reinforced door that will appear to be a standard wood door from the outside.
There were numerous buildings/bunkers built in Germany in the late 1930's and early 1940's that withstood repeated 500-1000 lb bomb drops. Stout structural, reinforced concrete can work wonders.

There are also a number of "engineered wall" companies in the market, making stuff designed to withstand F5 tornadoes, bombs, etc. If you're otherwise unable to build such walls yourself, this sort of engineered alternative might be an option. Such as ... Hardened Shelters.

Another alternative is, if your home layout supports this, to transform your M.BR into a "safe" room of sorts. Particularly if the one room is all you'd need to secure (ie, kids are long gone), it might be the overall best mix of benefits. Needn't necessarily be completely capable against blast, gas and the like. But it some simple "safe" room build elements can dramatically raise the difficulty of getting into that room. Tougher/steel "security" doors, hardened panels/webbing in the walls, BP windows, a simple safe inside that room, secure comms, etc.
 

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There was a similar post a month or two back. Many had posted comments. I am a building contractor and have been reading a lot over the past two years about storm shelters. Google FEMA Storm Shelters. They have prescriptives for shelters.

You can build out of wood, or concrete/concrete filled CMU. Lots of choices to fit different budgets/skills.

As for doors, you can buy vault doors from safe companies, or build your own fortified doors. Again, options are there for budget/skills. Econo door would be 1-3/4" thick door with reinforced jambs. You can have 1/4" steel jambs made, then trim with wood so it looks like a closet door. Remove one screw from each hinge and drive. 1/4" steel rod. The hinge hole on the door needs to be drilled to accept it as well.

Hope you show us what you end up doing!
 

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Built in home safe

My parents recently built a new home and my father wanted to move away from his regular gun safe. While discussing the blueprints and layouts of the house, my dad asked if things could be moved to create a room to serve as a safe. The room is not huge by any means, but it looks amazing. Hopefully the pictures work and give you an idea of what he did. The inside is not yet finished, but will house all of his hunting rifles and shotguns. Best of luck in your endeavors and if you have any questions let me know! photo 1.jpg photo 2.jpg
 

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I have helped in providing steel and hardware for that very thing . I would love to do it myself but i have no room to do it. A customer of mine had a whole bedroom as a gun room i provided a steel door and frame that was in back or the wood door. So if you walked around the house you would never think other then it was a closed door to a bedroom. This guy had his guns layed out like a museum type display . Also had a work bench to cleam them . Cool Stuff.
 

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I saw a thread on AR-15.com a while back where a guy reinforced the existing walls of a closet with rebar going horizontally through the studs, attached expanded metal mesh across the whole thing on the outside, and filled between all the studs with expanding foam. He finished it off with drywall to make it look like any other wall and improve it's fire-rating.
 

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Must be kind of hard to lift that door, isn't it???? :rolleyes:


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He said that the door was definitely heavy, but much less than the full safe that he previously owned. The manufacturers installed the door, so beyond helping them lift it down the stairs he did nothing but watch them work their magic!
 

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Fireproof it Pig!!!
IMO= if you can go underground do it (ie, into the walls of your basement)

Best of luck...
 

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We went through a slightly different process, since we were having our house built; we had the area under the 3 car garage turned into a safe room with reinforced concrete and an engineered reinforced roof (garage floor). The hard part was finding a suitable door, much to our surprise many of the offerings either couldn’t be secured from the inside, or required an electronic lock to do so. We finally went with a fireproof door from the Sturdy Safe Co. that has a mechanical S&G lock, and a mechanical “panic” lock allowing the door to be secured from the inside.

One issue we had was a delayed choosing a door in time, before the foundation was poured, so I had to get a custom built door to the dimensions of the opening. Just be sure to choose a suitable door prior to starting your work. It can make a difference in your structural requirements to support it.

Chuck


 

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Chuck,

It looks like you door is set in place with shims, like a traditional door. What prevents someone with a sawzall from cutting the fasteners from the outside?
 

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Chuck,

It looks like you door is set in place with shims, like a traditional door. What prevents someone with a sawzall from cutting the fasteners from the outside?
Sixteen hardened bolts surrounded by mortar. It would probably be quicker to go through the 10” concrete and rebar than to screw with trying to get through the door. But then again, that’s when the alarm system kicks in.

It’s all a layered defense, with each layer requiring time to get through. IMHO there’s every little a determined and skilled thief cannot get into given the time. The average knucklehead however, when confronted with the walls and door will probably look elsewhere.

My other safe, with the expensive stuff, is secured within the saferoom.

Chuck
 

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We had extra room in our basement so we took a corner and made a safe room. Removed the small windows and replaced them with cinder blocks. Built two cinder block walls with multiple layers of sheetrock for the ceiling. Added a plain grey fire rated door from Home Depot (not a safe door) but used hinges that are not accessible from the outside. It blends in so well you would not suspect it's purpose and could easily miss it except for the handle / lock. 10' x 10' with electricity for lights / goldenrod and a solvent cabinet for storing powder and primers. Not bomb proof but better than a free standing safe in many ways! Plus my wife likes it for storage of jewelry and documents.
Thanks for all of these other ideas / suggestions!
 

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I built vault doors for Pro-Steel (Browning) when I was in college. They sold like crazy. No quick access though, combination lock only so not much good for a safe room. Maybe now they offer other entry systems. Probably a waste of money though if you're not also using iron reinforced concrete for the vault structure. Many people used them as a status symbol and their "vaults" could be penetrated in 10 mins or less with a bow saw or sledge hammer because they just used drywall or cinder bloc.

I'd just build a false back to a closet and hide a 20 gun safe if that's all the room you need. But building a vault is fun to daydream about and if I had the slightest excuse (and the $$) i'd do it just for giggles.
 
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